The law of averages as the salesman understands it, is, that out of a given number of people seen, a fairly definite proportion will ordinarily buy. The more people seen, therefore, the larger the volume of busi ness. Even if the proportion decreases, the actual results of seeing a large number of people will be larger. To close a sale in five cases out of fifty in a week gives the commission man two and one-half times as much as if he closed two out of six cases. Time— hours, minutes, seconds—is one of the salesman's greatest assets. The way for the salesman to make that asset pay cash dividends is to see every prospect lie possibly can, every day in the week.
The salesman owes this kind of hard work not only to himself but also to his house. The idea that some salesmen have of being busy is shown by their trying to do on the last day of the week the things that they have neglected during the other five. A house is en titled to a certain volume of business from a territory each year. If that business is not secured this year, the salesman cannot make up for it next year, for the house would be entitled to the next year's business in any case. In the same way, the salesman has no right to waste time four days of the week and try to make it up the other two, for the house is entitled to his best efforts all six days.
10. Salesman's attitude toward pects are very much the same the world over, and consequently one territory is r ot so diff erent-in possi bilities from another. The salesman should resist the temptation to think that his territory is an unusually difficult one to work, and that there are Much better territories in other parts of the country. Most top notch salesmen agree that success in selling is nine tenths a question of the salesman and one-tenth a question of the territory.
The salesman should realize that the territory is an asset of the house. He should work it intensively and systematically, and he should never admit defeat in any town. The towns that are most difficult to open tip are often the best fields, for they have in many cases been given up in disgust b3,- the weaker salesmen; consequently when better salesmen come they reap a big harvest. It is astonishing how many prospects in any town are "croakers"; they seem to take pleasure in telling salesmen that the place is dead and that other salesmen did no business there. A salesman can get plenty of that kind of advice in any town in the country, and of course if he heeded it he would do nO business at all. He should bear in mind that his house has produced a desirable article, that it can be sold, and that it is his work to sell it. These "croak ers" are not favorable prospects, it is true ; but fortu nately there are plenty of other people in the town— they say less and do more, and become prosperous.
They are the likely prospects. • 1.1 . time and its use outside of business hours.—The modern business world has pretty gener ally abandoned the idea that there is no connection be tween what a man does at eleven o'clock at night and what he does at eleven o'clock the next morning. The old-time hit-or-miss sales management concerned itself little with this problem. If the salesman turned in a fair number of sales, his personal faults and excesses were condoned. That is not the attitude of the sales manager of today. He is not satisfied with only a part of the salesman's efficiency. He demands maxi mum results, and the salesman who wishes to remain in his employ must take the precaution to conserve every ounce of energy that he possesses. No.man can be intemperate in anything and expect to develop him self to the utmost. The keen, aggressive, successful salesman of today is clear-eyed and clear-brained. He achieves the results that be sets out to accomplish because he is absolute master of himself—for mastery of self gives mastery of others.
The day of the salesman who is a heavy drinker has passed. It. is no longer necessary for a salesman to drink to obtain trade. The business goes today to the salesman who is most useful to his customer. A salesman's days of usefulness are numbered if befud dled mornings follow dissipated nights. The sales manager and the credit man unite to refuse business influenced by whiskey diplomacy.
While, on the one hand, the salesman must be tem perate in his amusements and must be a hard worker, on the other hand no man can work one hundred per cent of the time and be more than fifty per cent effi cient. If the salesman would make the best of his time, he must devote a part of it to healthful recre ation. He must have diversion in order that he may return to business with a clearer brain. Recreation does much to keep the salesman cheerful and optimis tie. The things that a salesman does outside of busi ness hours—the hobbies he rides, the books he reads— have much to do with what he is able to accomplish during business hours.
Recreation, then, should be a servant to the sales man ; the salesman should not be a slave to his recre ation. And above all, recreation should never be al lowed to encroach upon prospect-seeing time, nor should it ever be allowed to interfere with the sales man's preparation for his next day's work. The true test of the value of the salesman's recreation is whether or not it enables him to return to his work more cheer ful and more efficient.